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Jumbo Package: But the NCAA really means it this time...

How many times do you think we're going to keep letting you pull the football from beneath us, NCAA?

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

I've got a dollar for you if you believe this one

Illegal man downfield rule will be enforced 'as it's written' in 2016, NCAA officiating chief says |

Rogers Redding said additional officials on the field will be on the lookout for illegal men downfield. The change in officiating mechanics was actually put into motion midway through last season, he said. "We've said it — this is going to be a hard and fast 3-yard rule," said Redding, also the NCAA's coordinator of football officials. "In other words, we're not going to allow some (leeway), where it's 3-and-a-half or four yards, we'll give them that. We're going to be diligent about enforcing the rule as it's written." However, the instant replay official will not be utilized to either call or overturn an illegal man downfield penalty. "We talked about that a little bit, but ... the slippery slope of having the official in the booth create a foul is something we'd like to stay away from if we can,"

Fine, you don't want the booth official to create a penalty (although that's now the rule for targeting,) but how about at least a review? It's a player spot issue more than a penalty: did X go out of bounds, did the ball cross the plane, is it1st down and 4th or inches, were linemen 4 yards down field or 3? This seems a sensible use of the eye in the sky. So, in other words, nothing is going to change -- we're going to be on the business end of about 3-4 of these gamechanging no-calls a year.

'Crootin' All-Access: Would an early signing period change anything for Alabama, Auburn and other major programs? |

Alabama – perhaps the No. 1 recruiting school in America – saw seven 2016 players commit to the Tide and ultimately sign elsewhere, while six others flipped from a previous commitment to the Crimson Tide.

I honestly don't know what's stopping the early signing period. Almost everyone of influence wants it, including some high profile folks in the paleolithic Rust Belt conference. I suspect it's a matter of sooner rather than later on the early signing period. But, I've though that for about five years, so take that piece of soothsaying for what it's worth.

SEC commissioner does not want to partake in 'childhood use of Twitter' with Jim Harbaugh |

"That's a commitment and with that as the backdrop I think this is a substantive issue," he said. "The Big Ten is going to recruit Florida. We fully understand that. They should. Other Big Ten schools, other Big 12 schools are going to recruit in the SEC's geographic footprint. That's perfectly fine. This is about saying we're not going to infringe further on the time demands of student-athletes -- the free times and spring break in particular." Sankey is hopeful the issue is "dealt with in a timely manner," adding that pushing the limits of NCAA rules shouldn't be the focus for schools inside and outside the SEC.

Michigan plans to up that ante on its satellite camps by actually hosting spring practice in Florida during an offweek for the Wolverines -- on their spring break. Sankey thinks it's bad form to steal the kids spring break, to which Harbaugh started a trollkin twitter beef. Sankey has promised to untether the hounds of the SEC and see how the rest of the nation likes it. The long and short of this is that the absurd travel schedules for the "haves"  during the spring and summer, and the absurd satellite camps --often to lure on player-- is going to eventually force the NCAA's hand and impose some sanity on this. Or not.

Alabama's top running back targets in 2017 class |

TOP RUNNING BACK TARGET Najee Harris (6-foot-2, 220 pounds, Antioch, Calif.) The five-star Harris is the nation's No. 2 prospect per the 247Sports composite and one of the top running back prospects in quite a while. He committed to Alabama last April, but Alabama will have to work to keep him from staying closer to home. He does seem firm to Alabama, especially due to his relationship with assistant coach Tosh Lupoi. In the 247Sports individual rankings, Harris is the new No. 1 overall prospect.

I'd feel a lot more comfortable in Najee were in our backyard and not California. Alabama could do wonders for itself by pulping the Trojans on Labor Day, and running the ball about ninety billion times in the process (both of which which would make me happy TBH.)

5 teams off to a fast recruiting start in the class of 2017 -

All four of Miami's four-star commit hail from either Miami or Ft. Lauderdale. 6'5, 300-pound offensive tackle Navaughn Donaldson and running back Robert Burns are a pair of exciting prospects from Miami that are on track to stay home to play college ball.

The existential threat to Alabama's recruiting in South Beach is a an old nemesis; we see you Mark Richt.

It's official

New Alabama assistant Derrick Ansley a 'bright young coach' |

"We are very happy to have Derrick and his family back at Alabama," Tide coach Nick Saban said in a statement. "Derrick did an outstanding job when he was with us as a graduate assistant, and he has a very good understanding of how we run our program and what is expected. He is a bright young coach, and he will be a great addition working with the defensive backs. We also believe he will be a tremendous asset to our staff in the recruiting process."

DB Coach Ansley is not a friendly looking chap. He looks like he could still outquat half the team.

Well, now...

Ex-TAMU QB says culture from Manziel era was 'big part' of why he left | FOX Sports

I think the culture was a big part of it, and I think that stems from Johnny's era there -- the way that they let Johnny and [others] act there,” said Allen, the No. 1-rated pro-style quarterback in the 247Sports Composite for 2014. “They [could] do that and still win games because they had Johnny … and five offensive linemen playing in the NFL right now.” Allen added: “A lot of people were riding off that, ‘I can do whatever the hell I want and win on Saturday.'"

The inmates are truly running the asylum in College Station -- not that we needed it verified, you can tell from the sloppy undisciplined way the Aggies have always played under Sumlin. Speaking of whom, that man parlayed a transcendent QB talent and Sherman's offensive line recruiting into $5 million a year. Good call, Ags. Tom Herman on line one.

Over my cold, lifeless body

Mailbag: Should Clemson fans assume Swinney's 'Bama-bound? | FOX Sports

With coaching changes, it's all about timing. If Saban calls it quits in a year that Swinney takes his team to the mid-January national title game, Alabama may not be willing to wait that long to select his replacement. If Lane Kiffin stays long enough to win two more national titles, does Alabama come to embrace the idea of giving him the job? Or what if last season turns out to be Swinney's peak? If he goes 8-4 the next two years, Alabama fans will no longer be interested.

Swear to god, I will chain myself in front of the athletic compound, clutching Dabo's unsigned contract screaming "molon labe" until I am forcibly removed. It will be like the Oregon standoff only adorable and with a better understanding of the law. I just...I just can't even with these Dabo-to-Alabama speculations.